Road to Recovery for California’s Wine Country

Business is slowly resuming in Santa Rosa, Wine Country, after the devastating fire disaster. Arts organizations like the Luther Burbank Center for the Arts have started picking up the pieces and moving on. The institution is already even planning its first event since reopening. To raise more funds, tickets are going for whatever price one can afford. Other organizations are also in the process of rescheduling their canceled events.

Dreamforce Donates Funds to Wine County Fire Victims

Salesforce, through Dreamforce, is responsible for the Wine Country fire benefits show. At the charity event held at the AT&T Park, Dreamforce donated over $500,000 to the victims of the Wine Country fire tragedy. There were over 170,000 attendants at the event, not including the millions who live streamed it on the internet. Present to wow the crowds were renowned artists like Alicia Keys and Lenny Kravitz. Other key figures who graced the event are Dave Matthews, Metallica, and even the former first lady Michelle Obama, who was the Dreamforce convention’s keynote speaker.

The success of the event can be credited to a few high ranking officials, who include the CEO of Kaiser Permanente Bernard Tyson, Larry Baer, president of Giants, and of course Salesforce’s CEO Mark Benioff.

Proposed Set of Tougher Safety Rules

The California Public Utilities Commission has proposed several amendments to the rules covering utility poles, phone lines, and power lines. The proposed regulations were initially discussed in 2007 when there was another fire disaster. If accepted, operations from several utility companies in fire-prone areas would be significantly affected. The new rules might also see utility company operations costs rise, and the typical resident would feel the bite as well.

When implemented, features like trees would need to be pushed further away from power and telephone lines than they currently are. Also, space between newly installed lines would need to be adjusted. When fixing these issues, the utility service providers are requested to start repairs in the higher risk areas and conclude with the low fire risk locations. A map established by the same commission showed that most of the affected regions in the Wine Country fire were in high-risk areas.

The fire that caused damages amounting to billions has sparked a lot of debate as to whether stricter rules should guide utility companies. Nevertheless, all hope is not lost for Wine Country, and better times can be predicted.



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